Medicine costs cut with new program - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Medicine costs cut with new program

^  Annette Abreu ^ Annette Abreu
^ Charlie Brown ^ Charlie Brown
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January 9, 2002

Albany-- Finding a way to pay for expensive prescriptions is a difficult juggling act for many people on Medicare. Lots of people are forced to go without medicines when there are bills to pay and not enough money to go around. But now there's help.

Charlie Brown is cooking up some of his famous fried chicken, "They love it. I call it Charlie's fried chicken." Preparing chicken might seem like a simple task for most. But for Charlie, who suffers from debilitating arthritis, it's a major feat, "I have arthritis all over, feet, neck, hip and back."

Charlie takes medicine twice a day for the pain. He also has cataracts and uses eye drops four times a day. Both medicines cost Charlie nearly $200.00 a month. But with a monthly income of just $582.00, most of his money pays for pills, "Did you ever go without your medicine because of the cost? Yes. I have pain, but I just tough through it."

Georgia Cares volunteer Annette Abreu is helping people like Charlie bring down their prescription costs, "I talked to a lady this morning who is taking medicine every other day because she can't afford to buy medicine and it's sad, it's really sad."

Georgia Cares is a six month old program that works with pharmaceutical companies, doctors and hospitals to lower costs for people on Medicare., "They draw anywhere from $600.00 to $900.00 a month, and have medications that cost $300.00 to $400.00 a month, you can't live on that."

Today, Charlie Brown is living a little better with help from Georgia Cares--paying only a $5.00 co pay for one of his expensive medicines.

People over 65 and others who qualify for Medicare might be able to also lower their prescription cost. For more information about Georgia Cares, call 1-800-669-8387.

Posted at 6:25 p.m. by melissa.kill@walb.com